On Tuesday, the Buffalo Sabres (11-20-7) will look to stop their losing streak from reaching three games when they visit the Ottawa Senators (11-18-2) at Canadian Tire Centre. It’s the first of three meetings between the Atlantic Division foes. The Sabres will return to Ottawa next Tuesday while the Senators will make their lone trip to Buffalo on April 20.
Let’s get into our Sabres vs. Senators betting pick with player prop predictions, odds, and analysis for this January 18, 2022 matchup.
As expected, the Sabres were a much better team in their home game against Detroit on Monday afternoon than they were when they visited the Red Wings last Saturday. Still, Detroit came away with a 3-2 win in overtime, sweeping the season series.
Buffalo now heads off to face a Senators team that has had eight of its last 11 games postponed because of COVID-19, but has managed to at least go 2-1-0 when they have played, which is only three times in 30 days.
The Sabres should look to get off to a fast start considering they’ve been playing while the Senators’ schedule has been such a mess that this will be their first home game since a 4-0 shutout of Tampa Bay on Dec. 11.
Jeff Skinner continued to play well for Buffalo, scoring his 14th goal of the season in the loss to Detroit, and could be trying to play his way out of town as contenders could be interested at the trade deadline.
Aaron Dell has been getting the bulk of the work in goal for the Sabres of late, but expect Michael Houser to make his season debut tonight against the Senators.
As for Ottawa, it is coming off a nice road trip to Western Canada where it picked up wins against both Calgary (4-1) and Edmonton (6-4). Twelve different Senators registered at least one point, and Matt Murray, getting the nod for the second straight game, was strong in net.
Leading the way for the Senators offensively was 22-year-old winger Alex Formenton, who had a goal and three assists. Josh Norris also continued his his hot scoring of late with two goals, running his season total to 16.
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Sabres vs. Senators Odds
Here are the lines for Sabres vs. Senators at FanDuel Sportsbook NY:
Spread: Sabres (+1.5 -162), Senators (-1.5 +132)
Moneyline: Sabres (+168), Senators (-205)
Over/Under: Over 6 (-112), Under 6 (-108)
Bets We Like with a Sabres Win
Buffalo to win the first period (+230, BetMGM)
Buffalo doesn’t win much of anything, but the underdog has won eight consecutive first periods between these two teams when they play in Ottawa.
Considering the Senators haven’t been home in so long, they could come out a little conservative. Especially since they want to build off the things they did well in Calgary and Edmonton.
When the Sabres are competitive, as they were Monday, they tend to look good early. They may not be able to hold onto a lead, and they’ll likely look to jump out early to support Houser. This bet is worth a flier.
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Bets We Like with a Senators Win
Tim Steutzle to score at least one goal (+255, DraftKings Sportsbook)
No longer a teen sensation (he turned 20 over the weekend) Steutzle, the third overall pick in the 2021 NHL draft, was starting to find his offense before COVID wreaked havoc with the Senators schedule. Steutzle had four goals and three assists in eight games just before the holiday pause. Since then, he’s played in just two games (he missed the Calgary game while in the COVID protocol). He did pick up an assist against Edmonton and looked fresh. He’s a player who could take advantage of an already weak Buffalo defense, starting their sixth goalie of the season who is coming in playing on back-to-back nights.
If you don’t like the rationale for Steutzle, the aforementioned Formenton, who has four points in the last two games, is also +255 at DraftKings.
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Senators to WIN and UNDER 5.5 total goals ( +310, FanDuel Sportsbook)
The Senators are a heavy favorite here. Rare that a team with the third worst record in the sport is a favorite, never mind a -200 favorite, especially against a team AHEAD of them in the standings. So, we understand your reluctance to lay that wood and would rather fade them.
However, if you parlay them with the total, and tease down the total a half point you get great odds on a team that should win.
But why the under? We already pointed out that Buffalo struggles defensively and will be turning to a sixth string goalie.
Because the Sabres will look to play hard in front of Houser, who is being thrown in to a tough spot. They’ll look to keep it a low-scoring game. The Sabres also struggle to score, which helps keep the total down as well. In fact, 10 of the last 14 Sabres games have come in under 5.5.
Then there’s the weird trend that the Senators have lost eight consecutive Tuesday games when they are a favorite. Not sure what the day of the week has to do with anything, but maybe it’s something they think about and try to play more structured hockey.
If you don’t like that logic, and want to go Senators and the over, you can still get it at +185, but why not ride the better odds in this one?
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Sabres vs. Senators Prediction
Buffalo keeps it close for two periods, but then tired legs get the better of them, and the Sens pull away with a pair of goals, including an empty-netter in the third period.
Prediction: Senators 4, Sabres 1
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